HB25 would make libraries in Louisiana pawns to local politicians. We need your help to stop HB25 and keep library Boards of Control independent of Parish Councils.
HB25 is politically motivated and is not in response to the need or will of voters and citizens in our state. It will not enhance or improve library services in your Parish or mine. Passing HB25 would be an unwarranted, unwelcome, and dangerous change to the very foundations of public libraries in Louisiana.
This bill does not propose a minor change to library law. It should not pass because it is not needed in Louisiana. The responsibilities of library Boards of Control are as citizen representatives safeguarding our public libraries. This should not be invalidated for political expediency. The role of professional librarians and directors should not be assumed by Parish Councils or Council-appointed advisory committees.
The bill sponsors are clearly motivated by politics. As reported in the Louisiana Illuminator, '“When you start making too many missteps, you’re going to be called on the carpet so to speak,” Rep. Hollis said. Hollis added he would like to see other appointed local boards be subject to similar accountability.'
Historically in Louisiana and all across the country, library Boards of Control make hire/fire decisions about the library director. This keeps that position of public trust free from politics and patronage. HB25 allows for not just the library director to be appointed by the Parish directly, but it also allows them to hire or fire anyone on staff - from the reference librarian to the custodians - making the library a huge political patronage honeypot.
If you want to keep local politics out of our libraries, please join the Louisiana Library Association and EveryLibrary in opposing HB25. Send a message today to your state Representative and Senator to urge them to Vote NO on HB25. We want to keep libraries free, open, and accessible to everyone, not have libraries be directly beholden to local politicians.